What Is SEO / Search Engine Optimization?
So exactly what is SEO? Search Engine Optimization (SEO) looks for and finds new ways of making websites more prominent in search engine queries. SEO is the active practice of optimizing a web site by improving internal and external aspects in order to increase the traffic the site receives from search engines.
The majority of web traffic is driven by the major commercial search engines - Google, Bing and Yahoo!. If your site cannot be found by search engines or your content cannot be put into their databases, you miss out on the incredible opportunities available to websites provided via search - people who want what you have visiting your site. Whether your site provides content, services, products, or information, search engines are a primary method of navigation for almost all Internet users.
Search engines have four functions - crawling, building an index, calculating relevancy & rankings and serving results - SEOMoz
Search engines are always working towards improving their technology to crawl the web more deeply and return increasingly relevant results to users. However, there is and will always be a limit to how search engines can operate. Whereas, the right moves can net you thousands of visitors and attention, the wrong moves can hide or bury your site deep in the search results where visibility is minimal. In addition to making content available to search engines, SEO can also help boost rankings so that content that has been found will be placed where searchers will more readily see it. The online environment is becoming increasingly competitive, and those companies who perform SEO will have a decided advantage in visitors and customers.
There are 3 main methods of search engine optimization which include:
Keyword SEO - Search queries, the words that users type into the search box which contain terms and phrases best suited to your site, carry extraordinary value.
On-Page SEO - Search engine algorithms place emphasis on certain HTML variables within a website such as headings, tags, and several other factors. On Page SEO is the practice of modifying the web page structure by strategically placing keywords in the HTML to allow the search engines to place emphasis on certain keywords related to a particular web page.
Off-page SEO - The primary ranking factor in the Google algorithm is the number of incoming links a web page has and where they come from. Off Page SEO is the practice of acquiring inbound hyperlinks from quality link partners within your niche. This practice is similar to a "vote" of confidence from a trusted site which is why search engines place such a high value on the number of links your website has.